When Jose Luis tells us that since he was very young he had clear that he wanted to dedicate to the music world, it wasn’t hard to believe him. “I studied Music and Management, and little by little I started to organize little concerts”, says José Luis. This way, he made his way through the person who would be director of the International Festival of Santander for 33 years.
His debut in the artistic world was the organization, for nine years, Music Festival of the Bien Aparecida. We have to add to this the foundation, in 1975, of the Coral Salvé of Laredo, in which he is still the director.
At the same time, in 1979, they proposed him to manage the International Festival of Santander, and he accepted it excited as “an interesting offer and at the same time a challenge, because he had to combine it with the Coral and the Musical Festival of the Bien Aparecida”. As he says, thanks to the team that went with him during his long career at front of the FIS, he succeeded at combining his work in both institutions, doing a great job.
The International Festival of Santander is the most important cultural event of the Capital of Cantabria. As Ocejo says, from its beginnings in 1952, it has been “a slow sowing, a thin rain which has enriched our society with the music, the dance and the theater”. In his opinion, the most brilliant moment of that long career was when “Maurice Béjart, with the dancer Jorge Donn, performed an American ballet”. “There were 20 minutes of applause and a general reaction of admiration. It was the first full of the festival; in the year
1989” adds José Luis Ocejo. However,
not everything is a good memory. He remembers a fact that he classifies as
“unusual”, remembering that anecdote when “one of the main artist didn’t want
to perform because in the poster where the spectacle was advertised, his name
was smaller than the main actor’s”, without a doubt one of the many that has
happened during his career in this institution. Jose Luis Ocejo left the
management of the International Festival of Santander in 2012, after devoting
with passion to the mission of the cultural expansion of Cantabria.
Right now, he is still cultivating his love for the music as director of the veteran Coral Salvé de Laredo, in which the members are still the same ones of the initial group, back in 1975. To assure the continuation and the survival of the group, they have created a “choir school” to introduce the young people into the world of the coral.
Carlos Edilla, Diegos González, Pablo Bustamante
Estudiantes de bachillerato, Colegio
Imagen interior Carlos Edilla, Imagen de portada